South Side Giving Circle


 "All that you touch you change. All that you change changes you. The only lasting truth is change."
- Octavia E. Butler, Parable of the Sower


The South Side Giving Circle (SSGC) of CFW mobilizes philanthropic resources of women primarily on Chicago's South Side and in the South Suburbs to invest in the economic, social and political power of black women and girls in metropolitan Chicago.

We are a fierce group of women paving a path of investment into women-of-color-led community initiatives and have awarded $83,600 to 9 Black-woman-led organizations on the South Side since 2018.

The SSGC had 54 members in 2019 who engaged with the Circle in various ways. Some members simply invest financially while others attend meetings, site visits, and actively engage with grantees through service and support. All members can nominate potential grantees, however only members who attend the spring grantmaking training and the November decision meeting can participate in the final vote. Networking opportunities also exist through social events planned by SSGC and other CFW events throughout the year.

The Queen Makers are currently completing their 2020 grantmaking cycle, and accepting members for 2021. See below!

2020 Grantees
A Long Walk Home
Black Girls Break Bread
Brave Space Alliance
Girls Like Me Project, Inc
Gyrls in the HOOD Foundation
Ladies of Virtue
The Dreamcatcher Foundation

Leadership Award Honorees
Asiaha Butler, R.A.G.E
Eula Burge, Proactive Community Services
Yaisa Hagood, South Side Center of Hope
Kelly Fair, Polished Pebbles
Chez Smith, Gyrls in the HOOD Foundation

2019 Grantees
A Long Walk Home
Girls Like Me Project, Inc
Her Future: Teen Mom Empowerment
Ladies of Virtue
The Dreamcatcher Foundation

Inaugural Leadership Award
Recognition of a Black woman who is inspiring change through her leadership
Lauren Cole, ED, Her Future: Teen Mom Empowerment

2018 Grantees
Assata's Daughters
Girls Like Me Project, Inc
Polished Pebbles
Sisters Network - Chicago Chapter
Violets in Bloom

2020 Chairs
Akira Barclay
Ashley Leonard
Whitney Wade
Damaris Walker

Founding Members
Felicia Davis; Jessyca Dudley; Cristal Gary; Phaedra M. Leslie; Melody M. Miller; Nicole Reed; Nicole Robinson


  • Be a broad-based membership group with leadership reflecting the communities we serve.

  • Build a network of women that is a catalyst for gender and racial equity on the South Side of Chicago.

  • Raise awareness for the unique inequities black women and girls face at the intersection of race and gender.

  • Support initiatives that give black women voice, and that retain/grow their political power.

  • Invest in community-based groups led by those most directly affected by the issues that the organization addresses.

  • Introduce new organizations to CFW, a relationship through which leaders may grow networks and capacity and become connected to other funding opportunities.

Membership for 2021 is Now Closed


The generousity of our Queenmaker community can make an immense differnce through these uncertain times. This is why during these times, we have adjusted our membership donation to a range of $500-$1,500 to give you additional flexibility to join us this year. At least half due by June 30, 2021, and the balance due in full by Oct. 31, 2021.

Membership is for the calendar year 2021. A calendar of activities is forthcoming; however a typical year has consisted of a grantee celebration in February, meetings and grantmaking training in the spring, grantmaking processes beginning in the summer and running through November with awards being granted in December.

To Join or Renew:

Packet Complete, Need to Make Member Donation Only

Intersted in joining in 2022?

Add Your Name To Interest List To Find Out More


For more information, contact Eli Marsh, Director of Social and Community Impact, at
312.577.2825 or